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Paige Rense tossed Escada’s turquoise tweed jacket over her cream-colored pants — very Palm Beach — to host the first part of America’s International Fine Art & Antique Fair at Cafe Boulud in the Brazilian Court. The effervescent editor in chief of Architectural Digest was the event’s honorary co-chairman, along with John Loring of the Tiffany Lorings. Among those dropping by were Lucky Roosevelt; Jane and Jimmy Buffett; Marcia and Richard Mishaan; Edwina Sandys, Winston Churchill’s granddaughter; former Ambassador Nancy Brinker, and some of the country’s top interior designers.
The fair opened with a vernissage honoring British press Lord and Lady Rothermere. She wore a lavender coat and a floral frock by Valentino. The fair’s creative director, Lorenzo Rudolph, showed the Rothermeres around the convention center, adorned with $2.5 billion worth of art, antiques and jewelry. Among those admiring paintings by such as John Singer Sargent, Picasso, Renoir, Kandinsky and Norman Rockwell were the supermodel Stephanie Seymour in a black clinger by John Galliano; Hilary Geary Ross in a lavender cashmere sweater over a sequined skirt by Michael Kors; Betty Sherrill in a blue and white plaid suit; Pauline Pitt, so smart in a gold silk printed jacket and escorted by Jamie Niven; Muffy and Donald Miller; Alexa Hampton in a beige evening coat; Pilar and Pablo Molyneux; Richard Feigen; Patricia Patterson in a fuchsia sari with gold sequins; Ann Downey and her daughter, Mona de Sayve, and on and on into the night.
The next night, almost all of the above poured into Lars Bolander and Nadine Kalachnikoff’s charming penthouse and gardens on Worth Avenue to discuss the delights of the show, which ends Sunday and will be followed by a dinner at the home of Pitt, one of the fair’s fair chairs.
Jennifer Lopez is deep into planning her first fashion show, which takes place on Friday. Ever the perfectionist, she’s involved in all the preparations: fittings, styling, hair and makeup. But don’t look for her in the front row, because she’ll be hands-on backstage, making sure each look represents her vision before every model sashays down that runway. Jennifer and her husband, Marc Anthony, are set to sing a duet in Spanish at the Grammy Awards on Sunday, where Anthony is up for two awards. Also raising their voices in song or presenting awards will be Norah Jones, Alicia Keys, Bono, Bonnie Raitt, Ellen DeGeneres and John Travolta. Queen Latifah will be the night’s host in what she promises will be one striking outfit after another. Not that the Queen herself is not striking enough.
Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber started writing his autobiography with gusto but stopped when his advisers said he was being far too candid. Milord, who has worked with all sorts of stars, decided not to risk offending anyone. Said he: “I can’t see the point in writing an autobiography if you don’t tell the truth.” No point — especially if you hate the sight of blood.
Speaking of candor, some famous people run it into the ground when they are interviewed. Here’s Karl Lagerfeld on the imperfections of two of his Chanel muses: “Kate Moss is far from perfect — smaller than other girls, with bow legs — and something about her face is slightly skew-whiff, and Nicole Kidman doesn’t have much in the way of breasts.” Skew-whiff? Whatever that is, look where it got Kate Moss. And whether Nicole has not much in the way of breasts, it hasn’t kept her from being the biggest star of them all.
As for Kidman, she is selling her house in Sydney for $9 million. She no longer wants to live in the place because she does not consider it safe for her and her children. You remember she discovered those listening devices hidden by spies throughout and she also realized that it’s possible to shoot pictures through the windows. She’s hoping to move into a more secure penthouse in the city with its picturesque harbor at her feet.
Christian Slater has finished his award-winning run in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” in London and has a four-month break coming before beginning rehearsals to play Chance Wayne in a revival of Tennessee Williams’ “Sweet Bird of Youth.” During his hiatus, Slater is planning to fly back to California to try and save his marriage to Ryan Haddon and see his children, ages 5 and 3. This may prove to be an even bigger challenge than the Williams script, because Ryan doesn’t want to move to London permanently and Slater does.
Jennifer Garner wants to go back to college and get a master’s degree. She says she would like to learn more about creative writing, investment banking, music and cooking. Is that all? Meanwhile, it’s rumored — that’s rumored — that Ben Affleck will propose to her on Valentine’s Day, which might alter her plans a little, maybe?
Emilia Fanjul of the sugar-sweet Fanjuls of the Dominican Republic and Palm Beach gave her annual dinner to benefit the Glades Charter Schools she helped found. It was attended by 180 of Palm Beach’s best and was held at Cafe Boulud in the Brazilian Court hotel. In the crowd were Lillian Azqueta; Kate Gubelmann; Emilia’s sister, Helena Martinez; Prince and Princess Michel de Bourbon-Parme; Alfie Fanjul; Kate Ford; Jean Tailer; Lourdes and Pepe Fanjul Jr.; Brian and Emilia Fanjul Pfeifler; Christina de Caraman; Serena Boardman; outgoing Palm Beach mayor Lesly Smith, and others too sun-drenched to mention.
Emilia’s husband, Pepe, who is quite the good sport, underwrote the evening and for good measure bought a pair of Verdura earrings in the live auction. Of course, he gave them to Emilia. Jamie Niven of Sotheby’s fame was the auctioneer but he had an easy job of it as Pepe was not going to be outbid, no matter what.
P.S.: Emilia made a lot of sun-drenched money.